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Project Management Assignment: Planning & Budgeting for National Symposium



Case study:
National Symposium Project

Planning and implementing a national symposium for a society that will draw about 1000 attendees is a major project. As the event is not for profit, the registration fee is $1,250 per attendee for a 3-day symposium with free access to all arranged workshops. The tasks involved in hosting such an event are considerable and involve selecting a program committee, choosing a theme, contacting exhibitors, making local arrangements, planning the program, and on and on. Gold Coast is selected as host city/chapter for the 2020 Annual December Symposium. The objectives for the event are three: (1) to deliver a high-quality, value added program that would be useful and last for years to come, (2) to offer a social and guest program that would reflect well on the host city, and (3) to meet strict financial criteria. The first task after selecting the city and hotel facilities is to put together the project team and chairperson. This includes managers in charge of each of the tracks, the social program, the local arrangements, and all the other details. The project team needs to organize this event using a functional approach. The Gold Coast officers have most of the primary responsibilities, with members from five other business partners assisting in other duties. Next is the development of the work breakdown structure and the Gantt chart of activity schedules. As shown in Table 1, scheduling all the work for a major event such as this is an overwhelming effort. For the 2020 Symposium, the technical program offered 22 workshops composed of 70 technical papers, special panel discussions, and case studies.

The technical tracks include engineering and construction, pharmaceuticals, utilities, software, automotive, R&D, defence, education, and manufacturing. The workshops include sessions on preparing for professional certifications, learning about Taguchi concepts of statistical quality control, and future practices. All of these also require careful scheduling. The vendor program includes exhibits by dozens of vendors and a large number of showcase sessions for in-depth demonstrations of their wares. The social program includes a golf tournament, numerous social activities to meet with colleagues, tours of Pittsburgh’s attractions, and a wide variety of entertainment opportunities. All in all, a symposium is as difficult a project as many firms face in their competitive markets.

Project Management Assignment Part A: Defining project quality and its association to project cost management
How do you define quality in a project? Describe tools/techniques you think are a necessity for planning a project’s quality management and how to implement them. Explain how the project cost can be affected by poor quality and give some examples from the given case study.

Project Management Assignment Part B: Cost and Quality Management Plans
You will begin developing the cost management planning components of your Cost Management Plan. For this plan, you are responsible for developing the project cost estimate and a project budget baseline. In addition to your cost estimates and budget, include 750 words to describe the processes, and tools and techniques you are using in your cost management plan, as well as justification of your budgetary plan.

You will develop the quality management planning components of your Quality Management Plan. The written portion of your quality management plan should consist of 750 words.


Quality of Project
The quality of the project can be defined as the fitness for use, in the respect of meeting customer demands and having the least amount of errors in it. The quality of a project is often defined in vague terms and hence it is difficult to provide an articular definition of it, especially the quantitative determinants of the project quality. However, the factor of quality is often defined grounded on the customer wants and requirements and hence the quality of the project is determined after evaluating the individual expectations of the project along with the stakeholders’ expectations and the regulatory requirements and the quality standards provided by the firm. Therefore, it is imperative that the customers’ needs and demands are identified and stated and then the project quality is defined (Brackmann et al., 2020). For instance, if the quality of the final deliverables is poor and does not meet the client expectation then the project team has to make modifications again leading to increase the cost.

Project Quality Management Tools and Implementation
The project quality is a crucial aspect of the overall project’s success and hence the project quality should be dealt with utmost importance (Caramia, 2019). Hence, the management of the project quality becomes an inseparable part of the overall PM. The project quality management often requires the utility of several techniques as well as tools that aid the PM to effectively handle the quality of project. The project quality management tools are listed below:

Quality Management Plan:

  • The QMP is an important tool for the regulation of overall project quality. The QMP of the project consists of various aspects such as the quality assurance, quality standards, quality control, as well as continuous improvement of the project quality. The QMP provides a clear outline of overall PQM initiatives.

Quality Management Framework:

  • The quality management framework gives the precise guidelines for the inspection of the project quality to ensure that the project meets the quality specified by the company, the clients and the other stakeholders as well as the quality specified by the competent authorities such as the ISO and the other organisations of the country.

Additional tools:

  • The project quality management often utilises other quality management tools such as the flow charts, pareto diagrams, histograms, fishbone or Ishikawa diagrams, etc. These are specific analytical tools that are used for this purpose and often are of much utility in this aspect. The implementation of these tools and techniques are done at the decision of the project manager and according to the needs of the situation. The discretion of the project manager and hence it does not have any specific methodology for implementation.

Effect of Poor Quality on Project Cost
The National Symposium Project is an important project and hence the project quality must be ensured. The poor quality of the project can have an adverse impact on the project cost since the inability of the project to meet the expected quality can lead to the stakeholders (attendees) to not pay the registration fee and hence the project cost would exceed the budget and hence the project would fail (Project Management Institute, 2017).

Constructive Feedback
In order to ensure the appropriateness of the project quality, one must keep in mind that all the information related to the product or service must be accessible and available. This would aid all throughout the project and successful accomplishment of the final deliverables. Apart from this, the use of appropriate tools is also necessary to ensure the project quality or else the outcome will not be as expected or anticipated. The aspect of quality assurance must not be confused with quality control, as they seem similar but they are not identical.

One must also enhance on the aspect of cost when focusing on the aspect of quality all throughout the project. It is because for any project there is a budget allocated and it should be completed within the given budget itself. It is of utmost importance to ensure the quality while being within the budget as well as not exceeding the same.Furthermore, keeping in mind the requirements of the client is extremely crucial for ensuring the project quality. It is of paramount importance to understand the fact that if the client is not satisfied with the quality of the final project they will ask to make revisions on the same. In case, such happens the project team would be required to make modifications accordingly, and this will lead to increase the project budget even further.

Part B
Cost Management Planning

Cost management refers to the process of controlling the cost of a particular project in a right way. The cost management of a project includes a wide variety of activities such as cost estimation, cost planning, creation of a budget, funding, controlling and benchmarking of the project cost, etc. The cost management aspect of the project is aimed at completing the project with the allocated financial resources in the given period of time maintaining the quality of the project. The National Symposium Project is a major project alongside the budget of the project has been estimated. The estimated project budget is given below.



Estimated Budget

Symposium Project Management

Carol Hoskins, Sally Adams

65*8*5= $2600

45*8*10= $3600

Total= $6200

Technical Program

Bob Thomas, Sheila Egan

75*8*10= $6000

55*8*14= $6160

Total= $12160


Susan Green, Lanny Abele

50*8*10= $4000

65*8*12= $6760

Total= $10760

Corporate Sponsorship

Carol Hoskins, Randy Hall

65*8*18= $9360

55*8*13= $5720

Total= $15080

Facilities Vendor/CAO Support

Randy Hall, Stu Berg

55*8*29= $12760

45*8*24= $8640

Total= $21400

Social Guest Program

Susan Green, Lanny Abele

50*8*13= $5200

65*8*5= $2600

Total= $7800


Lanny Abele, Kristin Johnson

65*8*5= $2600

45*8*10= $3600

Total= $6200


John Reid, Marty Pittman

45*8*15= $5400

60*8*10= $4800

Total= $10200


Carol Hoskins, John Reid

65*8*3= $1560

45*8*6= $2160

Total= $3720



Total Budget= $93520

Table 1: Estimated Budget of the Project
(Source: Created by the learner)

Cost Estimation Tools
A wide variety of cost estimation tools have been used to carefully estimate the project cost and budget.

  • Analogous Estimation: This is an effective tool in project budget estimation. This tool gives a clear idea about the project budget by taking into account other similar previous projects. This tool is cheap and effective and gives a comprehensive idea about the detailed cost of the project that can be incurred in the course of the project in various activities at different phases of the project. This tool is less time-consuming and hence this tool has been used for gaining advantage regarding time management.
  • Parametric Estimation: This is another efficient tool in the project cost estimation and this tool has been extensively used in making the budget estimate of the project. In the given case study, the hour rate of the resources were provided. From that data, the budget estimate of each of the resources have been calculated by assuming that the resources would be utilised for 8 hours a day since the work day generally constitutes that many hours.

Cost Management Plan
The CMP refers to the concise outline of the cost estimation, budget allocation and cost control of the project (Cardone&Grous, 2020). The CMP gives a precise idea about the cost expenses that would be required for all the resources for completing all the activities entailed within the project. Generally, the cost management plan includes details related to the manner in which the project cost would be planned, funded alongside consequently controlled as well.

  • Resource Loading: The resource loading refers to the total assigned work hours that would be required to complete a given task divided by the total number of hours that the task can be done. In this case, the total assigned hours is 8 hours a day. Consequently, the manager can reduce the number of work hours a day according to the needs of the situation. Generally, the project work is loaded at more than 75% in order to be completed within the stipulated time.
  • Cost Baseline: The cost baseline of the project refers to the total cost estimated of the project by adding up the cost estimate of each of the activities (Volchko et al., 2020). The summation gives the budget baseline that has been calculated to be $93520. This initial budget would be subjected to approval from the competent authority.
  • Cost Control: This is the most important component of the cost management planning of the project. The cost control has been done by optimizing the cost of each activity by dividing the activity among the resources and taking into account the optimal number of days that are required for the completion of the tasks. The Earned Value Analysis (EVA) has been utilised in order to effectively detect the changes in the processes and anticipate the final cost of the project.

Quality Management Planning
Quality Management Plan

The QMP refers to the outline, which explicates how the pertinent policies, procedures, and guidelines would be implemented in the organisational context in order to meet the standards related to the expected quality of products and services of the firm (Haq et al., 2018). The quality management plan entails a broad set of activities that are aimed at delivering product or service according to the set of industry standards as set by the authority as well as the expected standard of quality of the firm. The quality management is a pertinent aspect of project management of a firm. In this case, the quality of the National Symposium Project is an important part of the completion of the whole project. The QMP of the project entails four main components that have been described below:

  • Quality Standards: The quality standards refer to the standards and specifications of quality that must be achieved by the project. The standards of quality for this project are derived from a number of sources that are the pertinent authorities for specifying the quality standards. The internal standards of the firm show the primary level of quality standards that must be met by the project. The regulatory requirements provided by the client and the industry-standard specifications must also be met by the project. Moreover, the country-specific standards must also be met in the completion of the project.
  • Quality Assurance: This refers to the process of auditing the requirements of quality of the project and analysing the results of the utility of different measurements of quality control that are being used for the project (Demirkesen&Ozorhon, 2017). The main objective of the processes of quality assurance is to guarantee that the project work is being done in accordance with the specified guidelines and the project meets the quality standards that have been specified. The quality assurance activities are carried out in a systematic fashion and involve a thorough inspection of the overall performance of the different units of the project with respect to the expected quality.
  • Quality Control: This is aimed at inspecting the cause of poor quality in the project and consequently testing the different aspects of quality management within the project. The intent of the quality control is to verify that the deliverables of the project are conforming to the specifications of the stakeholders (Yun et al., 2016). The quality control often involves the use of different methodologies such as six sigma and Kaizen and total quality management that are pertinent in regulating and upholding the quality of the project. The quality control gives information on the tolerances and control limits that can be present in the project.
  • Continuous Improvement: This is arguably the most important part of the quality management aspect of the firm. The activities of the continuous improvement are aimed at filling the gaps in the quality expected in the project with the help of different processes. The gaps in the quality as detected by the quality control activities are then subjected to continuous improvement so that the overall project quality is able to meet the quality standards that are related to the project (Arab Momeni, Yaghoubi&Aliha, 2019). Some of these activities include the adherence to the quality control methodologies such as six sigma and others. These activities can be carried during the project at regular intervals.

Quality Management Framework
The quality management framework refers to the tool that provides the structural guideline that defines the quality environment of the project and the set of strategies, policies, guidelines and regulations that are used by the project manager to assure and manage the quality of the project (Guez, 2017). The framework is a useful tool to the project manager for making sure that the project is able to meet the quality standards as specified. The QMPof the project has been devised, and it is an important part of the quality management framework, however the manager must ensure that the plan is being implemented properly.

The quality standards are determined at first by the project manager Carol Hoskins and then the quality control activities would be carried out. The continuous improvement activities of the project are carried all throughout the duration of the project. The framework suggests that a thorough inspection of the quality parameters be carried out at an interval of 5 days for ensuring that the quality of the project is met (Yang, Zhao&Lan, 2016). The framework is also useful to the clients for getting assurance that the project is done according to the quality standards.

Arab Momeni, M., Yaghoubi, S., &Aliha, M. R. M. (2019).An optimal control model for analyzing a quality investment in project management. Computers & Industrial Engineering, 129, 529–544.

Brackmann, M., Carballo, E., Uppal, S., Torski, J., Reynolds, R. K., & McLean, K. (2020).Implementation of a standardized voiding management protocol to reduce unnecessary re-catheterization - a quality improvement project. Gynecologic Oncology, 157(2), 487–493.

Caramia, M. (2019).Project management. Computers & Industrial Engineering, 136, 1–4.

Cardone, A., &Grous, C. A. (2020).Relocating sterile processing activities to an off-site facility: cost, design, and project management considerations.Aorn Journal, 112(1), 30–38.

Demirkesen, S., &Ozorhon, B. (2017).Impact of integration management on construction project management performance. International Journal of Project Management, 35(8), 1639–1654.

Guez, G. (2017). Management de projet. Option/Bio, (2017).

Haq, S. U., Liang, C., Gu, D., Zhao, S., & Du, J. T. (2018). Project governance, project performance, and the mediating role of project quality and project management risk: an agency theory perspective. Emj - Engineering Management Journal, 30(4), 274–292.

Project Management Institute. (2017). A guide to the project management body of knowledge (PMBOK Guide®) (6th ed.). Newtown Square, Pennsylvania: Project Management Institute.

Volchko, Y., Berggren, K. D., Back, P. E., Tiberg, C., Enell, A., Larsson, M., … Rose?n L. (2020). Assessing costs and benefits of improved soil quality management in remediation projects: a study of an urban site contaminated with pah and metals.The Science of the Total Environment, 707, 135582–135582.

Yang, K., Zhao, R., &Lan, Y. (2016). Impacts of uncertain project duration and asymmetric risk sensitivity information in project management. International Transactions in Operational Research, 23(4), 749–774.

Yun, S., Choi, J., Oliveira, D. P., Mulva, S. P., & Kang, Y. (2016). Measuring project management inputs throughout capital project delivery. International Journal of Project Management, 34(7), 1167–1182.


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